Pipeline Excellence, Patient and Health Impact, Pfizer
Continuing Policy Fellow, Centre for Science and Policy
"There was a real willingness to engage with our policy topics, and it was incredibly helpful to have different perspectives on many of the questions the pharmaceutical sector is grappling with. In addition to the level of expertise and knowledge that you would expect from leading university research teams, there were some surprising connections made. Some of the most valuable interactions were those that helped clarify and sub-divide the more jumbled policy topics into areas where there are distinct academic traditions and bodies of knowledge that can be drawn upon. Overall, lots of fresh thinking and many areas to follow up on. An excellent programme!" (November 2010)
Dr Heathfield is Senior Director of Global Health and Value Innovation Centre at Pfizer Inc. Between 2007 and 2012 he was Director of Science Policy for Europe in Pfizer’s Worldwide Policy group. Based at Pfizer’s European R&D headquarters in Sandwich, his role was to bring a European perspective to Pfizer’s global science policy development, liaising between internal groups in R&D, regulatory affairs, and government relations, and business units within the UK, EU and USA. Prior to taking up this post, he worked as Senior Government Affairs Manager, providing input to policy debates on medicines regulation (particularly health technology assessment, and the Office of Fair Trading inquiry into pharmaceutical pricing).
Before joining Pfizer, Dr Heathfield spent six years working as a parliamentary adviser and policy analyst. At the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit (from 2002 to 2004) he developed approaches to assessing the costs and benefits of GM crops; he also worked on improving wealth creation from science and technology, and building policy around understanding of behaviour change and personal responsibility. As Committee Specialist for the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee (from 1999 to 2002) he identified issues for parliamentary inquiries including regulation of stem cell research and human genetic databases.
Dr Heathfield completed his PhD (in climate change) at York in 1996, after which he conducted post-doctoral research in ozone depletion and climate change to support satellite observations of the upper atmosphere in the Space Science and Technology Department at the STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.